Vol 3 Section 0674
which I broke ground to my satisfaction last night, breaking out of bed in the ghostly small hours to do the first chapter & fire the train.
Sam also mentioned losing Ernest Howard Crosby’s address, then finding it. Crosby and Beard were active in the N.Y. Anti-Imperialist League [MTP]. Note: the “long, long satire” is not identified.
Sam also wrote to Frederick A. Duneka: “I haven’t read the proof, but have examined your marginals. I have suggested ‘Inadequate Atonement’—I found none of the others improvable” [MTP].
Sam also wrote to William Dean Howells.
“This has been the most prominent object in the study for a week or two, and visible, aggressively visible from all points of the compass, and all that time I have been wrecking the whole damn place for it. If it had been thirty yards square, b’gosh I never should have found it” [MTHL 2: 740]. Note: Sam was referring to Thomas Bailey Aldrich’s late Dec. letter.
Sam also wrote to Mr. Seaman.
“I thank you ever so much, but I shall doubtless be on the other side of the world at that time, with my family. Shall be, if our plans do not fail us. I hope you will have a good time” [MTP]. Note: Seaman is not further identified.
Sam also wrote to Joe Twichell.
Can’t go to New Haven.
Shall go to Hartford per 4 p.m. train.
Shall transact my business next morning, & leave for Hartford during the day.
We leave here for Elmira day after to-morrow [Jan. 20], and return Jan. 27.
Love to all! [MTP].
Sam’s notebook: “ Women’s University Club. Its first reception in its new clubhouse, 13 E. 24th— 8 to 11 p.m. Mrs. Arthur H. Scribner will call for us at Grand Central—(we leave here at 7.27 & arrive there at 7.55. Her address: 10.W. 43d.” [NB 42 TS 2].
January 19 Sunday – Alletta F. Dean wrote to Sam. Paine gives us backstory and quotes Dean’s letter:
“The Double -Barrelled Detective Story,” [In Jan. and Feb. 1902 Harper’s] intended originally as a burlesque on Sherlock Holmes. It did not altogether fulfill its purpose, and is hardly to be ranked as one of Mark Twain’s successes. It contains, however, one paragraph at least by which it is likely to be remembered, a hoax—his last one—on the reader. It runs as follows:
It was a crisp and spicy morning in early October. The lilacs and laburnums, lit with the glory-fires of autumn, hung burning and flashing in the upper air, a fairy bridge provided by kind nature for the wingless wild things that have their home in the tree-tops and would visit together; the larch and the pomegranate flung their purple and yellow flames in brilliant broad splashes along the slanting sweep of woodland, the sensuous fragrance of innumerable deciduous flowers rose upon the swooning atmosphere, far in the empty sky a solitary oesophagus slept upon motionless wing; everywhere brooded stillness, serenity, and the peace of God.
The warm light and luxury of this paragraph are factitious. The careful reader will, note that its various accessories are ridiculously associated, and only the most careless reader will accept the oesophagus as a
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.